Vol. 5 Num 558 Wed. December 21, 2005  

'Charging high price for bottled water a violation of human rights’

Marketing bottled water in excessive price is one kind of human rights violation, observed speakers at a seminar in the port city yesterday.

They demanded that the government take legal steps against collection of naturally available water for doing brisk business instead of providing service in a little profit.

Chattagram Nagarik Udjog, ActionAid Bangladesh and Consumers' Association of Bangladesh (Cab) jointly organised the seminar on "Bottled Water and Human Rights" at the Chittagong Press Club auditorium with Professor SM Enamul Hoque, chairman of the Department of Soil, Water and Environment, Dhaka University, in the chair. Journalist Muhammad Idris presented a keynote paper in the seminar.

The speakers said right to water is internationally recognised as one of the most important elements of life. At least twenty litres of water is needed per head, but most of the world population were deprived of this required quantity of water.

Many of the bottled water marketing companies do not have necessary approval of Bangladesh Standard Testing Institute (BSTI) for bottling water, alleged the speakers.

Mosharraf Hossain, Chittagong director, the Department of Environment, Dr Prabhat Chandra Barua, Prof Monirul Azam, Engineer Subas Barua and Touhid Ibne Farid addressed on the occasion.